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Protests and Trust in the State: Evidence from African Countries

Marc Sangnier () and Yanos Zylberberg ()

Bristol Economics Discussion Papers from Department of Economics, University of Bristol, UK

Abstract: This paper provides empirical evidence that, after protests, citizens substantially revise their views on the current leader, but also their trust in the country's institutions. The empirical strategy exploits variation in the timing of an individual level survey and the proximity to social protests in 13 African countries. First, we find that trust in political leaders strongly and abruptly decreases after protests. Second, trust in the country monitoring institutions plunges as well. Both effects are much stronger when protests are repressed by the government. As no signs of distrust are recorded even a couple of days before the social conflicts, protests can be interpreted as sudden signals sent on a leaders' actions from which citizens extract information on their country fundamentals.

Keywords: Protests; trust; institutions; leaders. (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D74 D83 H41 O17 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-afr, nep-dev, nep-pol and nep-soc
Date: 2017-05-29
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Related works:
Journal Article: Protests and trust in the state: Evidence from African countries (2017) Downloads
Working Paper: Protests and trust in the state: Evidence from African countries (2017)
Working Paper: Protests and Beliefs in Social Coordination in Africa (2013) Downloads
Working Paper: Protests and Beliefs in Social Coordination in Africa (2013) Downloads
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